Reinventing Sunday Dinner

by Kelli H. on August 1, 2011

On Sunday night I decided to finally get back to cookin’!

It was quite exciting my friends. It took me a while to come up with some recipes I wanted to try out most and one of them was Jenna’s Stuffed Shells. I was interested in trying out a stuffed shells recipe with NO cheese. Who would have ever thought this could be good? In all honesty, I didn’t have high hopes but once I tasted the mixture I knew it would be delicious! I actually thought these were the best shells I’ve ever had – winning!

Dairy Free Spinach Stuffed Shelled
Adapted from Jenna Weber

2 T olive oil
1.5 t salt
1 t oregano
16 oz extra firm tofu
2 cloves garlic
1 T nutritional yeast
10 oz. frozen spinach, defrosted and drained of excess water
1 box jumbo shells
1 recipe tomato sauce follows below

1. Cook shells in bowling salted water until el dente. Drain.
2. Drain the tofu with paper towels and crumble into food processor. Add in olive oil, salt, oregano, garlic, and nutritional yeast. Process on high until smooth like ricotta.
3. In a large bowl add in tofu mixture and spinach. Combine well.
4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pour 1/2 the tomato sauce into the bottom of a 9″x13″ casserole dish. Stuff shells with about 2 tablespoons filling and place in pan. Repeat until all shells are stuffed. Pour remaining tomato sauce on top of shells.
5. Bake for 30 minutes covered with aluminum foil.

Simplest Tomato Sauce
from Annie’s Eats

1 (28 oz) can whole tomatoes
1 onion, peeled and halved
5 T butter
salt to taste

Combine the tomatoes, onion, and butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring mixture to a simmer, then reduce the heat to keep the sauce at a low, steady simmer for 45 minutes.  Stir occasionally, crushing the tomatoes against the side of the pot with a wooden spoon.  Remove from the heat, discard the onion, and add salt to taste (if needed).

** If you want to save yourself some time, go ahead and use your favorite marinara sauce but this tomato sauce is very simple to make and very tasty – it’s worth the extra effort. 

I love reinventing the Sunday dinner to a healthier version of what it once was. The dairy free shells were a perfect meal for me since I actually have a food sensitivity to cheese.

I found the nutritional yeast at Whole Foods. It’s a yellow color and to me, looks similar to fish food. Not the most appetizing looking stuff but it sure worked great in this meal. The guy at Whole Foods told me some people use it on their popcorn for a cheesy flavor.

Have you ever tried nutritional yeast?

{ 7 comments… read them below or add one }

David August 1, 2011 at 6:18 pm

These were actually REALLY good for not even having any cheese in them! 🙂 I’m glad you made these! They are keepers for sure.


my little celebration August 2, 2011 at 2:11 am

When I saw this recipe on Jenna’s blog I wanted to try it, too! Glad you did as well, you just beat me to it :D.


Made in Sonoma August 2, 2011 at 2:24 am

@my little celebration
It’s so good! I’m sure you’ll love em!


Errign August 2, 2011 at 8:14 pm

Love nutritional yeast – especially on popcorn! I have Jenna’s shells on my “to make” list 🙂


thecookieboss August 3, 2011 at 12:05 am

I’ve never tried it. But, if those are the best shells you’ve ever had, maybe I should try it 🙂


Made in Sonoma August 3, 2011 at 3:45 am

I have some left over, I think I’m going to have to try it on popcorn!


girl in the pink August 5, 2011 at 9:01 pm

Yum, this looks good! I have used brewers yeast, but not nutritional. I have heard they are similar, but I am not sure!


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